Brag Bowling, President Rob Monroe, Editor
3019 Kensington Ave 2416 Edenbrook Dr.
Richmond, VA 23221 Richmond, VA 23228-3040
November 2003 PROGRAM
Robert K. Krick
"The Confederate Pattons"
8:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 11, 2003, at the
Willow Oaks Country Club, 6228 Forest Hill Ave.
Robert K. Krick grew up in Northern California. He has
lived and worked on east coast battlefields for more than
thirty-five years. For thirty years he was Chief Historian
of Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park.
Krick is the author of fourteen books and more than one
hundred published articles. His Stonewall Jackson at Cedar
Mountain (University of North Carolina Press, 1990) won
three national awards, including the Douglas Southall
Freeman Prize for Best Book in Southern History. Krick's
Conquering the Valley: Stonewall Jackson at Port Republic
(William Morrow & Co., 1996) was a main selection of the
History Book Club and a selection of the Book of the Month
Club. His latest book, from Louisiana State University
Press (Feb. 2002), is The Smoothbore Volley That Doomed the
Confederacy: The Death of Stonewall Jackson and Other
Chapters on the Army of Northern Virginia. Krick is
currently under contract to the United States Marine Corps
to produce panels and texts and captions for the mammoth new
National Museum of the Marine Corps that is under design
near Quantico. Krick's topic is the fertile and militant
Patton family of Fredericksburg, Culpeper, and Richmond. The
family contributed several distinguished officers to the
Army of Northern Virginia, including the grandfather and
several great uncles of the renowned World War II Patton.
Review of the October Program
"You learn more by writing on a topic than by simply reading
about it." Larry Hewitt opened his presentation on Robert E.
Lee and his efforts to win the Civil War with this
admonition. Having read and studied about Lee's strategy
for many years, Hewitt decided to take that extra step and
summarized for the audience his initial thoughts and
findings. He then asked, "Has too much been written on
Gettysburg?" His answer is "no." Hewitt concluded that much
that has been written about the battle is bad or simply
Hewitt's next question was "Could the Confederacy have won
the Civil War?" He believes strongly that the Confederacy
might have succeeded in gaining its independence. Pointing
to several modern historians who share his point of view,
Hewitt said that Charles Roland was the first of those
historians to say that Lee was a great general and that the
Confederacy could have won. Hewitt argued that there is a
difference between winning and not losing. Lee believed the
Confederacy could have secured victory on the battlefield
and fashioned his strategy accordingly.
Jefferson Davis and the Confederate cabinet supported Lee's
invasion of Pennsylvania in the summer of 1863. Hewitt
argued that Davis was very close to Lee in his views on
strategy despite what other historians have written. Davis
abandoned the cordon defense and began supporting a strategy
of concentration for the rest of the war.
Looking at Gettysburg, Hewitt stated that the Confederate
failure on July 1 was due to General William N. Pendleton's
failure to bombard Cemetery Hill that afternoon. Such a
barrage would have signaled to General Richard Ewell that
Lee wanted an attack on that position. On the morning of
July 2, Lee planned to renew the battle and win a decisive
victory. Hewitt supports the view that Lee was pleased with
General James Longstreet's actions that afternoon. The en
echelon attacks were working. General Richard Anderson's
division was supposed to continue the assaults, but two of
his brigades (Mahone's and Posey's) did not advance. General
William D. Pender saw that something was wrong and rode
south to find out what had happened. Pender received what
would be a mortal wound, and the whole attack stalled.
Anderson was culpable for the failure that day.
At the end of July 2, six Union brigades were facing nearly
three times that many Confederate brigades. Although a few
things went wrong for Lee, the day had gone so well that he
had to attack again on July 3. The attack that Lee had
intended to make failed to come off. Ewell's men were to
attack the Union right flank. Union commander, General
George G. Meade, weakened his center to support his flanks.
As we know, Lee's plan did not work, and the Confederates
lost the battle.
Hewitt concluded that of the seventeen reasons presented by
Scott Bowden and Bill Ward for the Confederates' losing the
battle, only four could in any reasonable way be attributed
to Lee-(1) the breakdown of the attacks on July 2, (2) A.P.
Hill's mishandling of his Third Corps, (3) the failure of
Second Corps senior officers to coordinate their movements,
and (4) Lee's inadequate staff size and faulty
organizational structure. According to Hewitt, four
Confederates deserve censure for the army's failure at
Gettysburg prior to the morning of July 3-William Mahone,
Carnot Posey, Richard Anderson, and William Pendleton.
Capital of the Confederacy Civil War Show at the Richmond
Raceway Complex, 600 E. Laburnum Ave. Civil War artifacts
for sale, educational exhibits. 9 am - 5 pm Saturday, 9:30
am - 3 pm Sunday. $5. More information at 804-798-6817 or
"Blue and Gray Ball" at Fauquier Springs Country Club in
Warrenton. Civil War period clothing or black-tie.
Fundraiser for the John Singleton Mosby Museum. 5:30 pm -
midnight. $90 includes formal dinner. More information at
540-351-1600 or www.mosbymuseum.org
"Thanksgiving" living history at Pamplin Historical Park and
the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier near
Petersburg. Features artillery demonstrations, food
preparations and the construction of winter huts with the
soldiers. More information at 1-877-PAMPLIN or
"Visit with Civil War Santa" at Pamplin Historical Park and
the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier near
Petersburg. Living history and a holiday sale at the Civil
War Store. More information at 1-877-PAMPLIN or
Christmas Open House and living history at the Miller-Kite
House, Stonewall Jackson's headquarters, in Elkton. Noon -
5 pm. Donations are appreciated. More information at
540-298-1717 or 540-298-5390.
Holiday Music Program at Old Salem Church off Route 3 west
of Fredericksburg. 7 pm. More information at
540-373-6122 or www.nps.gov/frsp
Positions Announced for 2004 Round Table
President - Art Bergeron
First Vice President - Richard Forrester
Second Vice President - Shep Parsons
Secretary - Sandy Parker
Treasurer - Richard Grosse
Web Master - Gary Cowardin
Executive Committee - Jack Ackerly, Bobby Krick, Sam Craghead
New Civil War Books
Some recent additions to Civil War literature:
In the Presence of Mine Enemies: War in the Heart of
America, 1859-1863 by Edward Ayres. An intimate look at two
communities (Augusta County, Va. and Franklin County, Pa.)
and how they initially sought to avoid war, but soon entered
the conflict with vigor.
Southern Lady, Yankee Spy: The True Story of Elizabeth Van
Lew, a Union Agent in the Heart of the Confederacy by
Elizabeth R. Varon. A comprehensive account of the Union
sympathizer contemporary Richmonders dubbed "Crazy Bet".
Vicksburg is the Key: The Struggle for the Mississippi River
by William L. Shea and Terrence J. Winschel. A narrative
of the Union campaigns that secured the river and
Confederate strategies to break the siege.
To facilitate the printing and timely distribution of the
monthly newsletter, information for it should be submitted
to the editors no later than the following dates:
December newsletter, November 21
Information may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
RCWRT Monthly Speakers for 2003
Richmond Civil War Round Table Newsletter
Rob Monroe, Editor
2416 Edenbrook Dr.
Richmond, VA 23228-3040